Pronunciation: (ay AHN ah)
Origin: African, Hindu
Meaning: Beautiful Flower
When I was younger, for some reason I didn’t really love my name. I’m not sure if it was just “too unique” for me, or if it bothered me that no one could pronounce it correctly or spell it the right way. As silly as that sounds, that was truly my thought process as a child. I was very timid, unsure of myself and just went with the flow. I know that part of my timidness and unsure-ness came from being one of the only African Americans at my school, let alone African American girl growing up in Elementary School all the way through Middle School. It’s not to say that I got treated much different because of the color of my skin, but I did however feel like I was looked at differently, and didn’t always feel like I fit in. I felt as if my name didn’t help either, it was very hard to pronounce and when people couldn’t say it correctly, they would make up some random “ethnic” name to fill it’s place. For whatever reason, I found it hard for me to actually stand up for myself and educate people on how to say my name correctly. I asked my parents constantly why they named me Ayanna and what it meant. They never failed to remind me that it stood for Beautiful Flower, and that’s the reason why they chose it.
Fast forward to 15 years, I am now 22 years old and completely understand why my parents named me Ayanna. I couldn’t be anymore thankful and appreciative that they did. I absolutely love my name now, and am MORE than happy to not only correct people when they mispronounce my name, but also enlighten them on what it stands for.
As I’ve begun the process of finding myself/ becoming the best me that I can be, I genuinely feel like I am beginning to blossom into the Beautiful Flower that I was put on this earth to be.